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Commentary on Leda and The Swan by Raja H R Bobbili.

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Commentary on Leda And The Swan By Raja H R Bobbili Draft 1 Commentary on Leda and the Swan This poem is a narrative of an incident from the Greek mythology, where Leda is raped by the Greek God Zeus, who disguised himself as a swan. When read for the first time, the poem might appear to be a recital of just another bad incident in the Greek mythology; anyone who perceives it that way is totally wrong. The poem has very deep meanings and conveys a strong theme many times and in many way. This rape - a small incident, as it appears - has in fact given birth to a said-to-be work of art, Helen of Troy. This 'work of art' has eventually resulted into a massive genocide. Therefore, the poem revolves around a central that suggests how massive slaughters or genocides can occur from relatively very small incidents. This poem might be having several other themes, more subtly said than the central theme mentioned above. This incident has produced a great work of hard, the most beautiful women in the world, Helen of Troy. From this I learnt how tough it is to produce a work of art. Helen of Troy was produced by the combination of massive powers - the powerful Greek God Zeus and Leda. This shows the difficulty involved in producing art and hence, also demonstrates the skillfulness of artists. ...read more.


There is a clear separation between the first eight lines (octave) and the last six lines (sestet). The dividing half-line between the octave and the sestet is the point of ejaculation - "the shudder in the loins". This greatly signifies the complete change and the entrance of the new era right after the ejaculation. It should also be noted that this poem has a rhyme sequence of ABABCDCDEFGEFG. The style and technique that the poet has used is remarkable. He has used a wide array of literary styles to appraise the dangers of the incident. Alliteration has been commonly used "he holds her helpless", "brute blood", which immediately catches out attention. It is important to note that the two alliterations mentioned above have each been followed by a question, which might imply that the alliterations have been used in the first place to attract us to the questions. The poet did not leave the theme to be enlightened just by the technique - he used punctuation skillfully. The number of questions marks in this poem seems unusual for a 14-line poem. Why did he use so many question marks? The bitter helplessness in the poem can only be stressed by the use of question marks. "How can those terrified vague fingers push the feathered glory from her loosing thighs?" ...read more.


The ultimate connected between the preceding events and the Trojan War is made by the word 'Agamemnon' which, to me, made the poem all the more clearer than it already is. The vivid imagery which was illustrated by the use of diction, as mentioned earlier, has also been made significant by the use of imagery. Through the use of present-tense and present-continuous tense, combined with descriptive language, the life in the situation is made even more current. Phrases such as "A sudden blow", "her nape caught in his bill", "breast upon breast", "white rush" and "terrified vague fingers" have strengthened the reality of the poem, and have made it more interesting. Every scene has been picturised well, with the rape scene seen from both the narrator's point of view "her nape caught in his bill", "breast upon breast" and Leda's point of view "Vague fingers", "white rush". Every action has been described by such accurate and proper language that it is as if the rape is pictured in a slow-motion movie. The tone raises some very interesting questions. Even though the incident itself is very ghastly, the narrator's tone is very indifferent. Not once has the narrator's views been told. Why could Yeats have done this? I feel that this reiterates the 'reality' of the poem. If the narrator had stated his own perspective, the poem would not have been as realistic as it is now. ...read more.

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